We’re leaving tomorrow. The boat, as fortuitous a free pit stop as it has been for the past five weeks for us, has become confining and claustrophobic. We started getting cabin fever about a week ago but delayed departure because we were hoping to hang in there and save some cash.
However, that approach has never worked and quite possibly, will never work because we have learnt the hard way that when we force ourselves to stay in a place we no longer want to be at, we only end up making ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally sick.
We spend more money on distractions like snacks, and we eat more, which makes us more sick from eating beyond our bodies natural needs.
Here on the boat, where going ashore meant spending precious extra money for fuel for the tinny, we ended up trying to stay on the boat for days. Confined to a cabin space that’s 2 metres long, 2 metres wide and just over 1.5 metres high, in which 75% of the space is taken up by the two single bunk beds on either side, we grew tense, moody and lethargic.
The boat has a relatively large deck up top, however it has been blowing almost every day of our stay here and sitting in constant strong wind is extremely exhausting. You literally feel like you’ve been blown to bits after a couple of days.
During this trip, we basically went with the flow of our intuition. We learnt very quickly that following our intuition leads to good things, and not following our intuition leads to not-so-good situations. Once again, the logic-less path was the way to go, for we were rarely able to consciously articulate why we decided to go one way or the next, until we arrived there and learnt why.
We are also fortunate in that we are incredibly in sync with one another, and are thus able to move to the same flow, instead of conflicting. Most of the time, one will say something like, “I feel like we should…” and the other will reply, “I was just about to say exactly the same thing!” It’s a blessing I give thanks for every day.
We felt the intuitive call to move on two weeks ago. I like to say that we receive an ‘early warning’ and then we have an indeterminate ‘grace period’ in which we have time and space to be flexible about following the call. Once the grace period is past, however, stronger and more unpleasant signals tend to start, saying, “Time’s up!”
I personally believe that this rule of thumb is pretty universal for everyone, however, not everyone’s learnt to detect intuitive signals, much less how to understand and interpret them. And we’re definitely not taught to obey them! Quite to the contrary in fact!
Today, we woke up to yet another shitty morning and we both knew this was it. This was as much as we could take. Though neither of us said anything.
Then Colin suggested tossing a coin. I dug around for one and came back up with a $2 gold coin and he laughed. “That’s exactly the coin I wanted because there’s two of us.”
“So heads for go and tails for stay?” I asked. He nodded and in one swift motion flipped the coin. In that moment, I felt myself saying, “Heads heads heads heads HEADS…” The coin landed head-side up and we both grinned with relief. We’d both wanted it to be heads. No idea why we even bothered with the coin toss in that case, but I guess sometimes you just want something tangible to pin your decisions on.
Then the next question was, “Where to?” We had no specific idea, only the sense that we should head north. That is no light decision for we only have a tent, not a caravan, and the wet season approaches, with the first serious rains to start around October. Laura, Cape Tribulation, Home Rule… those were just a couple of places that came up in our heads. We were just following the feeling.
We started packing up. Didn’t take long. We have so little possessions that we were done in practically under an hour. We ferried the unessential items for the night over to the Mourilyan Harbour car park where our ute is parked, and dropped by the local shop to let a friend of the boat’s owner know that we were on our way.
Tomorrow, we leave at first light.
This time, I leave with the extra knowledge of the experience of the past two months.
When I first started on this journey, I’d never done anything like this before. I’d known that I wanted to try to live as simply as possible but “simple” is relative to what you are used to and I think such a thing needs to be approached in stages. Well, I did anyway, without even intending to.
What I learned as the weeks passed is that I needed less and less of what I thought I did when I started out.
Now, I have a chance to start again and try again with the new benchmark that I’ve learnt and I’m eager for our first stop-over at our storage shed tomorrow, where we will be sifting through our belongings with ever more precision and storing away the unessentials for when we decide to “settle down” again.